Things are Not Always What They Seem
We shared our flight to Invercargill with a tiny, bedraggled, elderly lady sporting a ruffled scrunchy and pink hair. I am ashamed to admit to inner eyebrow raising. She is now one of my favorite people on earth, a phenomenally gifted and successful sculptor and painter from Ireland with a lively wit and a very warm heart.
I’m ashamed of my initial assessment, and must admit that my own appearance likely could have been more polished on that day. Beth was my first “things are not always what they seem” experience in Antarctica.
There was also the hut at Cape Evans once occupied by Robert Falcon Scott in his effort to be the first to reach the South Pole. Scott’s McMurdo hut is so much more than the remains of a camping trip. It offers history and lessons in the results of grandiosity. I spent much time pondering these.
And, the dead seal that wasn’t. As I leaned down for a closer look at this sofa-sized pile of fat and fur, it raised its head and barked its bestial bad breath right in my face!
Many of us learn over time not to take things at face value. Then we forget!
Antarctica gave me a fresh reminder to bring this caution to work with me. As a Benefit Auctioneer, my events usually involve fancy dresses and sparkly shoes. But I do one auction where the bidders show up in jeans, camo and well worn boots… and pay for their items with rolls of $100 bills. It’s one of my favorite events, because the crowd is so much fun.
Our awesome veterinarian, Dr. David Cloutier, mentioned to me once that he always asks to take on the difficult pet owners in his large practice. He’s learned that their attitude often reflects a total devotion to the welfare of their pets, sometimes moreso than the compliant people who do whatever is recommended without question.
I need to keep all these moments in mind as I go through work and life. Beth walks beside me every day now, in my heart. So does that seal!